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Notifications and user settings

Notifications and user settings


Would you like to be notified by text message or email when there are changes to your courses?

Notifications is a tool that allows you to enable an email alert or text message when there are new items in your course! You can set up a notification to alert you about new content items, news/announcements, and even posted grades!

Each user is responsible for setting up notifications for their courses - it is not something Instructors will be able to do for them.

Note: You will still be able to receive emails sent from instructors despite any changes made to your notification settings.

  1. In the top right corner of the minibar, under your name, click Notifications.
  2. Notifications will always go to the email address associated with your account in Brightspace. For Ryerson students, faculty and staff, this will be your email address.
  3. Summary of Activity
    • This option will email you a summary of all activity for each course, as opposed to an instant email for each notification item.
    • Select how often you receive an email notification: Never (turns this option off), Daily (set an appropriate time), or Weekly (set an appropriate day and time).
  1. Instant Notifications
    • Review and select any area you would like to receive Email notifications
  2. Customize Notifications
    • Review the options and select any that you would like.
  3. Exclude some courses
    • You may choose the courses for which you don’t want  to receive notifications.
  4. Click Save to save your changes.

How do I set up mobile notifications?

Disclaimer: ​​We ​do ​not support ​the mobile notifications​, ​​due to ​the ​various ​mobile ​carriers' technical ​​aspects. ​We recommend ​the use of email notifications​, as well as checking your courses in a supported web browser (Firefox or Chrome) for any course updates​​.

​Please note that​ D2L ​doe​s not ask for any information via SMS. ​​If you receive any suspicious messages, ​we recommend you to go to to check your D2L course directly.

Before you can receive text notifications, you must register your mobile phone for this service.  Note that this is an optional feature you can use at your own discretion as you will be entering your mobile number into D2L Brightspace. (Ryerson is not responsible for any additional fees your mobile carrier may charge for SMS messages.)

  1. In the top right corner of the minibar, under your name, click Notifications.
  2. Under Contact Methods, you’ll see a link to Register your mobile. Enter the required fields, including your phone number.
  1. A confirmation code (4 digits) will be sent to your phone.

    You may receive a message stating that you are not subscribed to email to SMS service.  In which case, you will be prompted on your phone to text “yes”.  Then, you need to click “resend your code” in D2L before you follow the instructions on your phone to be texted a 4 digit code from

    Note: If your carrier is Freedom Mobile (previously WIND), you will first need to activate your email to SMS service before you can set up mobile notifications from D2L Brightspace. To do this, send an SMS message from your cell phone to the short code of 4000. (More information about this from Freedom Mobile's website, external link.) You may need to click “resend your code” in D2L to be texted a 4 digit code from before you follow the instructions on your phone.

  1. Set the Max number of messages per day you wish to receive per day.
  1. Under Instant Notifications, click on the SMS checkbox for any items you wish to receive an SMS message when there are notifications in D2L.
  2. Click Save.
  1. You can delete your mobile number at any time to stop receiving SMS notifications by clicking the trash bin beside your Mobile Number.

What is a "summary of activity"?

This is a scheduled email (either daily or weekly) that contains a list of updates from a specific Brightspace shell. If enabled, you will receive an email for *each* shell that you currently have access to, except for those you have added to the exclusion list.

Please note that users cannot control which areas of the course are included in the email summaries. The list of items with checkboxes are only related to Instant Notifications, and not summaries.

To enable a scheduled email summary, simply select "Daily" or "Weekly" from the menu and follow the on-screen prompts.

Enable a Summary of Activities by selecting the frequency from the dropdown menu.

What is included?

The following are among the items included in an email summary:

  • Unread discussion posts
  • Content updates
  • Quizzes not attempted
  • New assignment submission files

There are times when you are receiving too many notifications from a Brightspace shell that you aren't actively engaged in. You may choose to exclude these shells from your Notifications.

  1. Click the "Manage my course exclusions" link

    Scroll to the bottom of the Notifications tool, to the "Exclude some courses" section.

    Click the link "Manage my course exclusions".

  2. View a list of your Brightspace shells and select which to exclude from Notifications.

    Click the "X" to the right of any course you wish to exclude from the notifications. This will change the "X" to an arrow. Click "Close" to complete the change.

    If you have many Brightspace shells, you can use the search box at the top to locate a specific shell.

    To restore notifications for an excluded shell:

    • Locate the shell in the list, and click the arrow icon to the right of the shell name. This will change the arrow back to an "X".
    • Click "Close" to complete the change.

    Alternatively, you can click "Restore excluded courses" to restore notifications for ALL shells that were excluded.

Account settings

This section includes a number of settings that can improve accessibility for some users.

Locate the settings for your account by clicking on your name in the upper-right corner, then "Account Settings".

There are a number of user-specific settings here that can be used to optimize your experience with Brightspace. This is often most useful when using assistive technologies.

Here are a few highlighted settings that you may find useful.

Font Settings

Control the readability of the text in Brightspace by selecting an appropriate size and/or enabling the OpenDyslexic font.

Dialog settings

Dialog setting

This setting changes how pop-up messages appear in Brightspace.

"You should change modal dialogs to pop-ups if a) you primarily view the website on a small device, b) you primarily view the website with style sheets disabled, or c) you use an assistive technology (such as a screen reader, screen magnifier or voice software) that benefit from simpler page designs."

In short, if the above situations don't apply to you, please feel free to change this setting to "dialog". This may improve some users' experience when taking a quiz.

Enable/disable the rich text editor

HTML Editor settings

This setting determines whether you see a rich-text HTML editor or a basic text editor. Some courses rely on the rich-text editor in quiz responses, but it is important to make note of when it may not be an appropriate setting for you.

"The HTML editor enables you to enter text and HTML in the system. It has many additional rich text features. If you use assistive technology such as screen readers, some of these features might be difficult to navigate."

Turning off the rich-text editor will allow you to view and edit HTML code (source) in a plain text editor.


In this section, you can set a few defaults for how you send email.

  • check to "Save a copy of each outgoing message to the Sent Mail folder"
  • check to "Send a copy of each outgoing message to ..." your email address
  • set your Reply-to address
  • set your email signature


User profile

  • The features of the Profile have been disabled for the time being, pending investigation and testing.